Today, we’re going to wrap up this cultural series with a focus on my favorite group of people. The people who rarely, if ever, get talked about. The commoners.
When we left off, we were talking about Thegns. Specifically, we were talking about King’s Thegns and how they could wield degrees of power that could rival even the formidable Ealdormen.
Ealdormen… Thegns… Ceorls. These were the important cogs in the machine of government. They had powerful roles, and held powerful spaces within anglo saxon culture. And it’s time we get to know these roles like the back of our hand. Support the Show
Links to material referenced in the show. The Achavanich Beaker Burial‘Ava’: a Beaker-associated woman from a cist at Achavanich, Highland, and the story of her (re-)discovery and subsequent study, Published in the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of ScotlandThe Beaker phenomenon and the genomic transformation of northwest Europe at Nature.comA summary of the Nature.com [...]
Long ago there was a settlement that had been occupied and farmed by the British and the Anglo Saxons for centuries. In fact, by the time that the Scandinavians arrived on the island, this village known as Wharram Percy was already well established, and had been inhabited continually for centuries. And it held strong for [...]
We have spoken a lot about the life of a handful of individuals - namely the rulers that have descended from the line of Alfred. There are a couple of reasons for that. The first is the simple fact that by virtue of how limited literacy was during this era, these are the lives we [...]
I love Halloween. I think it might be my favorite holiday, and it’s not really because I like spooky things. I actually kind of hate horror movies. The reason I love Halloween is because in the pantheon of modern holidays it stands out. Most holidays in the western world have been rebranded and repackaged to [...]
It begins in France. The struggle for power between King Louis IV and Hugh the Great had been raging for quite some time… When we last visited the continent, , Hugh the Great, King Otto of Germany, Duke William of Normandy, Count Herbert II, and various other supporting characters were allied against King Louis IV, [...]
You know the pieces on a chessboard? There’s the knight, and the queen, and the castle….and then there’s the bishop. There’s a reason why a game that simulates medieval power strategy has a piece called the bishop. Bishops had power. And it was a power that didn’t flow from the monarchy. And in britain, it [...]
The story of the last few episodes is a story about a lesson that humanity has had to re-learn again and again throughout history. When your society is ordered around a single figure it’s likely to descend into chaos the minute that figure goes away. And finding a new balance in the midst of sudden [...]